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Political Screening: Theory and Evidence from the Argentine Public Sector

  • Ernesto Calvo

    ()

    (University of Maryland)

  • Gergely Ujhelyi

    ()

    (University of Houston)

Politicians can benefit by ensuring that public sector positions requiring political services are occupied by partisans. We study a model in which this political screening is achieved by varying the amount of required political services and associated compensation in otherwise similar positions. Past vote shares reflect the population share of partisans, and we predict a U-shaped relationship between an employee's current salary and the incumbent politician's vote share at the time of hiring. We test for this effect using individual data from a large national income survey from Argentina, a country with widespread political patronage. The results are consistent with the model, showing that political conditions at the time of hiring have long-lasting effects on public employees' wages.

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File URL: http://www.uh.edu/econpapers/RePEc/hou/wpaper/201303201.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Houston in its series Working Papers with number 201303201.

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Date of creation: 07 Jun 2012
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Handle: RePEc:hou:wpaper:201303201
Contact details of provider: Postal: Houston TX 77023
Web page: http://www.uh.edu/class/economics/

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